I watched grape soda swirl
down between globs of vanilla ice cream as I emptied the bottle
into a tumbler, bubbles foaming back up into a lavender head.
With a sudden plop the ice cream let go at the bottom of the
glass; like a whale breaching the sea it bobbed to the top,
sending foam over the sides. Greedy, childlike, I licked the
overflow. No sticky glasses for me.
"You pig," Calvin
said slyly. (His speech seldom palsied when tossing quips or insults.)
Not looking up, he focused his attention on every spoonful of ice
cream he scooped; cerebral palsy made him slow, measured, methodical,
never one to over- or undershoot his target.
"That's why you
married me, darling," I shot back. "And I'm not done yet either,"
I added. "Some talents are multipurpose." I leaned over to catch
with my tongue the spittle about to drip from the corner of his
mouth. His head, always tipped downward, kept his mouth slightly
open. Often I'd wipe the wet from his lip with my fingertips. If
we were alone, I'd push my fingers between his lips and he'd tongue
them clean. This time I slipped my fingers into my own mouth.
Calvin laughed when
he saw my mustache thick with purple froth, a dollop of ice cream
ready to drop from the end of my nose. "You are so right,' he said,
"let me love you up again, right now," and dipped his face below
my chin to catch the ice cream as it dripped from the tip of my
nose to the tip of his tongue. "Good catch, baby," I murmured, "your
talents are multipurpose, too!"
Rather than stop
there he steadied himself against the kitchen counter and continued
his ascent, licking first the bottom of my chin, then gently washing
my lips. Without thinking (I knew his body so well), my arms rose
to his shoulders to steady his climb. He enveloped my mustache with
his mouth and mimicked, more loudly, my earlier slurping sounds.
Lingering for only a moment, I broke away when I saw the purple
float still overflowing onto the counter. Calvin rubbed his bearded
face into the spill and scrubbed his cheeks against mine. "And you're
not a pig?" I asked, licking the drips that ran down his
"Give me a tongue
bath, baby." Calvin whispered deeply, "Lick my popsicle down to
the stick." He smirked, then giggled, then laughed out loud.
His brown skin,
shiny from the baby oil we had used at the beach, glowed in the
kitchen's afternoon heat. Small drops of sweat glistened in the
hair of his armpits, his musky dampness mingling with the smell
of grape soda and vanilla ice cream. Nuzzling his purple chin down
my neck, he slipped my unbuttoned shirt from my shoulders and let
it fall to the floor. Without taking his lips from my chest he reached
backslowly, deliberately, unseento his Orange Crush
float. Concentrating to control his fingers, Calvin scooped a melting
glob of ice cream from his glass and, with a jerk, squashed it into
my right armpit.
I bolted backwards,
almost knocking over my glass, but he held me firm, painting a drippy
orange-and-ivory swath from armpit to nipple, up to my neck and
into my mouth, where my tongue sucked the ice cream from his fingers.
With his other hand he searched in my glass for a firmer lump of
ice cream, then thrust it into my left armpit. I shuddered as he
squished cold ice cream over my warm skin, then slid his hand along
my arm, gently pushing it up until it bent and arched over my head.
Still steadied by the kitchen counter, he held my arm in place while
he licked the sweaty orange-vanilla mess back into my armpit even
as it started running down my ribs.
Gritting my teeth,
fighting the tickle of his mouth, I groped behind him for a scoop
of ice cream from his orange float and, with the skill of a magician,
thrust my hand deep into the back of his Levis, forcing ice cream
into the cleft of his butt.
"Ahhh!" he yelped.
"For that, bad boy, you will be punished," he warned, jerking me
into his arms and kissing me deeply while fumbling with my belt.
With finer dexterity than Calvin's, I took over, undid my own belt,
loosened my jeans and tugged at the zipper. We held our kiss, savoring
the taste of sweat mixed with ice cream.
Calvin's hand slid
down my wet chest and pulled my briefs away from my gooey belly.
Instead of the warm grip I expected, I felt a rush of cold as he
emptied my ice cream float down the front of my pants. My body shot
backwards but he pulled me to him, thrusting his hips into mine,
pushing the goop into my pants and down my thighs. Again my hand
reached behind him and shot the remains of his float over his head,
getting as much on myself as I did on him. His body arched like
a TV cowboy shot in the back, the spasm pushing me backwards. Unable
to regain my balance on the slippery floor, my feet shot out from
Calvin tried to
hold me, only to have his feet slip out from under him as well.
His arms shot out sideways, slamming the counters on each side of
my galley kitchen as he bucked with a full body spasm. He could
not let go if he'd wanted to. With my arms around his neck, I slid
down the mahogany hardness of his body, a hardness that only cerebral
palsy can offer. We slow-motion slumped into a tangle of arms and
legs and settled into the slop on my once-clean kitchen floor, now
Jackson-Pollacked with the white of my body, the brown of his, and
the purple and orange of our ice cream floatsa kaleidoscope
of sugar and dairy and lust.
my sticky ear lobe from his lips and whispered, "We almost killed
each other!" "Yeah, almost," I quipped. "Love can be like that sometimes."
we dozed momentarily as the cat stealthed into the kitchen to warily
lap up our work of art, watching, guardedly, lest the chaos begin
© Michael Perreault 2004
Illustration © 2004 Mark McBeth, IDEA | MONGER
Let us know what
you think of this BENT feature.
writes frequently for BENT.
His work is featured in "Queer
Crips: Disabled Gay Men and Their Stories," edited by Bob
Guter and John R. Killacky, Haworth Press.